Sunday, December 29, 2013

2013 - The Year in Review

The cold wind blew. It chilled my spine. Draped in warm and fluffy scarf around the neck I rush to the rescue of the warmth in my office every morning. Sometimes I do some work, other times I attend some boring meetings, fill my note pad with graffiti to save my boredom and sip some warm tea and at times I just stare blankly at the computer before me and pass the day. My days are filled with mundane tasks like these. 

It feels just like yesterday when I opened a blank Microsoft word page and started rambling about the year that was in this post. Since then I expected some grand changes to take place in my life in these past 365 days that will complete tommorrow. 

However, nothing odd and exciting seems to have taken place. I’m just the same old me. I travel the same stretch of road to reach work, see the same set of people every day, have sat in the same old brown/black chair eight hours a day and done the same job for the past three years. I’ve never taken a vacation. In fact my life has been like this; school--->College---->a year of working--->Post Graduate--->working at present. God, seriously I’ve never had a break in my life till now. 

Have I grown wiser? Umnn…I think so…but I’m not sure. Have I grown older? Definitely Yes. Yet life has remained as it is. Nonetheless, I feel blessed in this mundane life of mine. I try to find beauty in these little things and I thank the Gold Almighty for a wonderful life. Even if my life in the year 2013 isn’t exciting, let’s review it in pictures. Yay! 

JANUARY : January saw the first snowfall in Thimphu. I wish for knee-deep snowfall at this time of the year.


FEBRUARY: Finally a place where we can call home could be accomplished. Every morning I wake up to see this gorgeous morning sunrise view from my window.

MARCH:The weather had started to warm up in Thimphu by then, so a stroll in the Centenary Park was the perfect way to bask in the warm sun. The gorgeous snow-capped mountains at the back are breathtakingly beautiful. 


APRIL:The season of hope and renewal, April brought in fresh blooms. I captured this beautiful peach blossoms in Kyichu Lhakhang in Paro. This picture also got a place in a frame on the wall of my house.

MAY: My love for nail paint and nail art must have been at its peak. Like a maniac, I was painting and doing nail art frantically. 

JUNE: I had the opportunity to be a part of the delegate for a visit to the beautiful city of Copenhagen, Denmark in June. Loved every bit of it.

JULY: We went camping. Read the funny story here.

AUGUST: It rained incessantly in August. So it was the time for watching raindrops on the glass of a window and reading in bed. Bliss!

SEPTEMBER: Reading continued. A good deal of time was spent on reading this month which means I also drank a great amount of tea. I read The Fault in Our Stars, The Book Thief and The Kafka on the Shore. I've mentioned many a times about the books here in the blog. You can also find the reviews here.
Via Pinterest (Source unknown)
OCTOBER: My birth month. This letter to my 27 year old self  sums up everything.

NOVEMBER: Mother had her surgery successful. Yet again I contemplated on life in this post


DECEMBER: Ushered in the season of holidays and visiting family and friends. On the right is my friend's cute little son. Since selfies are official now, here's a selfie of me wishing you a happy new year 2014. Have a blessed year.
I'm always thankful to the Lord Almighty for this glorious life and a blessed year 2013.


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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Beauty Favorites



This is the first post ever on beauty on the blog  (wink=^_^), am I nervous? Definitely YES!
I know I can never do beauty blog posts but these products have totally blown me off, so thought they deserve a dedicated post on the blog. I’m so so so in love with these products.

     1) Ponds BB+ Cream
It’s an All-in-one fairness BB cream and is available only in one shade. When Pond’s introduced the BB cream, I was ecstatic after the disappointing Garnier BB cream. Seriously who doesn’t love BB cream ladies? It blends and finishes into the skin as smooth as a silk giving a perfect radiance. And also it can be used as a eye shadow primer for your eye shadow to last longer.

I finished a tube and wanted to purchase another when I got a shock. This product is not available in any shops in Thimphu, can you believe it? I searched high and low :(. Did Pond’s stop manufacturing or is it that it ran out of stock for being too nice?
   
After my good feedback, my cousin went to purchase it earlier but it was sold out but NOW it’s not available. Sad sad.

I wish Thimphu come up with more good cosmetic stores. For an 18g pack it’s priced at Nu.125. 
My rating ~~4.9/5

     2) Maybelline Baby Lips Color
I love this lip balm in Berry Crush. It lasts for quite long compared to other lip balms. The smell is yummy. Compared to Mango Crush and Lolita, Berry Crush gives a light tint leaving the lips moist and supple. It’s my best friend now; I carry it with me all the time.  

Priced at Nu.150, my rating is 5/5.

     3) Vaseline total moisture
Hands up if you love Vaseline products. Who doesn’t? Young, old, kids, all love Vaseline. Ever since I remember, I have always used and loved Vaseline. 

The cocoa glow Vaseline moisture is a 24 hr nourishing lotion for soft and glowing skin for this dry and ugly winter. The skin becomes flaky and that’s when you need this heavenly smelling cocoa butter moisture.

I’m a sucker for good aroma. Believe it or not, I first bought this pack for its nice cocoa fragrance and instantly fell in love with it. It comes at a very reasonable price, Nu. 190 for 300ml. I’m sure it will last me throughout this dry winter.

    4)  Maybelline the Falsies Volume Express
I think I have found my mascara. Remember how I talked about investing in a good mascara in this post.I finally found it, Maybelline the Falsies Volume Express. 

Ever since I started using this, I’ve stopped using eye liner on my upper lash line. Just as the name is, it gives the look of false eyelashes. And yes, the brush (the most important thing) is comfortable to maneuver and gives the perfect clump of mascara as required). 
Priced at Nu. 480, my rating is 4.9/5.

So there you go, my current beauty favorites. Reasonable price and within my budget limit.I will definitely plan on purchasing it again.

What are your beauty favorites? I’d love to hear in the comments below and would love recommendations as well if there are any.  

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Friday, December 13, 2013

For the Love of Books - A Bookworm Tag


via

For a bookworm like me what joys could be there to read a book tag post on the lovely Jen’s blog Bows Bangles & Bakes and get inspired right away. So here’s mine:  


 


As a child, my father used to give me a word for the week. I had to remember to spell it correctly at the end of the week. And the award was a candy. :). 

He used to be a strict father then. To remember the right spelling, I used to refer the dictionary, write it down and sometimes memorize the word. In the process, I used to hoard every books and papers available in the house to get the meaning correct as well. 
Naturally, this helped me to develop my love for words which stipulated my love for reading. I remember that as an elementary school kid, I used to borrow lady bird books from the library to read at home. I nurtured this habit and till today, I have my agape love for books, libraries and a good bookshop. 

I have never said this before. I would like to thank my father for nurturing this love for reading in me. I’m indebted to him forever. 

 



I read anywhere, everywhere. I read while eating, while cooking in the kitchen, in the bathroom. I love to be surrounded by books. But the most comfortable place I usually love to read is in the bed under the covers. 
However, my ideal place to read is by the fireplace sipping steaming tea or coffee on a cold day. 

Well, this is quite tricky. Honestly, I’ve never read several books at once except for the school textbooks :P. 
I’m a nostalgic person. When I read, I love to dive into the plot, fall in love with the words, sit quiet for a while and imagine the characters in the book. So if I read several books at once, I may get lost and wouldn’t be able to enjoy the book. 
So for the fear of being lost, I prefer to read one book at a time and enjoy it immensely than be cluttered and confused with several books at once. 





I don’t have one. As long as it’s a book with a good plot and a good language, I love all genres.  



 

I have to say The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand. Normally I finish reading a book in two-three weeks times given my busy schedule or overnight if the book is truly a page turner and simply unputdownable. I was not able to enjoy the The Fountainhead initially and that’s why I put it away on the shelf. Again, I opened it and gave a second try. After grasping the plot I knew it was a classic book, a book which was written in 1943 and still relevant today in this 21st century. It took me 6 months to complete the book. After which I watched the movie (1949) also, which was in black and white. My family thought I was crazy. But that’s how I show my loyalty to the book I love. 





I’m a bibliophile. It’s just that I don’t have budget to buy books. Nevertheless, I cut down on my make ups and bought The Book Thief (review here), The Fault in Our Stars (review here) and The Catcher in the Rye



 

I feel upset if I go into a bookshop and come without buying a book. So definitely, I love buying books. I have this dream of creating a small library in my home, so I’m working towards it little by little by buying a book a month, sometimes more than two.





The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger, a very light read and of course a naughty book.

So dear readers and book lovers, I tag all of you in this post. Go ahead and show the bookworm in you by doing this post. I enjoyed so much doing this post, hope you will too.

Wishing you a happy weekend! 

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Sunday, December 8, 2013

To be able to talk to your heart’s content

Like a warm blanket, the sun is streaming through the rooftop covering the balcony in the next building. As I sit in this cold apartment of mine where the sun is completely blocked by the rather monstrous building, I couldn’t help but envy the warm balcony next door. 

The three framed glass windows in my room act perfectly as a well manufactured binocular to look through at the balcony the next door. 

As I sat staring enviously at the warm sunlit balcony, a young man emerges out of the door and sits on the lone chair in the balcony. With a fair complexion, hair as dark as the cold dark night and a well defined cheek bones, he looks strikingly good looking. A loose thread hangs loosely from his gray pajamas displaying his hip bones as and when he raises his arms to shield his eyes from the sun. He picks up a book which has been lying face down on the floor. Ah, it pricks my heart to see the book left lying face down on the floor by this handsome lad. How could he do that to a book? 

It’s a book for goodness sake. Yes, I’m talking about a book. Books deserves a special place, it should never be left open facing down. It is disrespect to the book; it hurts me to see a book left like that. 
I wanted to shout at him. But how could I shout at a stranger? 

Next, I’m completely taken by surprise. He carefully dusts the book and flips the page to where he has kept open. Curiosity gets the better of me. I’m now curious to know which book he is reading. I try to peek at the cover of the page. It’s a paperback book in black color and has some red moon or face shaped image on the cover. There was this sense of familiarity of the book. He’s so immersed in reading that he doesn’t lift the book for me to figure out the book. 

I look at him; wait for him to put down the book but there is no slight hint of it. Looks like I’ve to wait. Ok, it isn’t a big deal for me to wait, after all a guy reading a book is simply attractive. And I don’t want to deny myself the pleasure of looking at attractive things, I thought and waited on. 

After what it seemed like a good twenty and five minutes, he looked up and in the process, closed the book. 

Oh boy, it was Kafka on the Shore. Good Heavens! I have the exact copy. No doubt, I was filled with this sense of familiarity earlier. 

I had earlier written a review on this book here. Again, I say, it’s a gem of a book. 

I had wished so much for a companion to discuss the book. I couldn’t help but think again on the book. This guy must have found it hard to put down the book like me. Did he fall in love with the beautiful and surreal Miss Saki like Kafka Tamura or did he adore the old man Nakata like me? What about Kafka’s mysterious father? I disliked him. Did he too? I wished that part of Kafka when he lived in the library in the far-off small town. 
Are these thoughts running in this guy’s mind too?, I thought. I wish I had known him so that we could have sat together and talked about the book. 

After all; 


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Saturday, November 30, 2013

The Last of Fall

Mellowed yellowish and orange leaves covered the ground making the earth a mustard floor. It swiftly blows away as the crisp autumn wind gushes. Everywhere you look; it’s the leaves falling to the ground. Thus, today, it officially marks the end of fall.

Long, cold and dreadful winter awaits now. Duvet days are definitely in. In this weather, I simply love to indulge in watching movies in bed or drinking steaming tea and reading or blogging by the fireplace.
What would be your simple delights? 


 Have a happy weekend!

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Sometimes the heart brags of human bondage

Thimphu at 6 am in the morning
The half completed assignment was still lying on the desk. The page of the book was perfectly folded and stacked away in the shelf waiting to be read again. The daily favorite tv shows were missed. Everything came to a complete standstill when I left for the hospital. I had an unfinished love affair with my assignment, my book and the tv shows. The hospital ward I had to live in for 5 days became an entirely new world. I was then Alice in Wonderland. 

I had the least of the knowledge that the world I would be living in for the next 5 days will be the one where sorrows, frets and frustrations were everybody’s everyday’s chores. 

Etherized on the hospital bed, my mother had yet to regain her consciousness and return to the reality of pain from the surgery. The water had completely drained from her pale face and she looked ghostly thin. 

Pungent air filled the ward. It fatigued me and made me sick at the pit of my stomach. I wondered how the patients were able to breathe in the air. But they were so much in pain that the pungent air was nothing compared to their pain. 

Dressed in pink and blue pants and shirts with their mouth carefully masked, the nurses came and checked the patient’s blood pressure and gave doses of the medicine as and when required. 

Opposite to my mother’s bed, a middle aged man was tending to his old wife. They had just returned from her chemotherapy treatment from Kolkata, the husband told me. The wife had lost all her hair to the treatment and she looked like a ragged doll. 

Next to their bed was an elderly couple. The wife had just done her surgery the day before my mother was admitted. A urinary plastic bag was attached to her bed and she could not walk. 

The husband was kneeling on the bed beside her and he looked at me with sympathy. I was exactly sitting in the same position like him. He could understand the pain of my mother. 
Through our eyes, we nodded at each other and understood each other’s struggles-struggle to see your loved one go under the knife, that moment of waiting outside the operation theatre and now the moment of waiting for my mother to regain her consciousness and for his wife to heal post-surgery; for her to be able to walk, eat and smile and go back to their village. They came for the surgery from their village, I was told. 

In another bed, a lanky looking man was tending to his wife who had undergone Cesarean Section to deliver the baby. She told me that this is their fifth child in a row. The husband had no job and they had no relatives. “Being poor is difficult, because there’s no one to look after when you are sick.” she said. 

The husband was juggling between the pediatric ward where the baby was kept and to the maternity ward where the mother was. 

The next day, they were discharged from the hospital. An old woman replaced the bed. Surprisingly, she also had no one to look after her at the hospital. Her left part of the body was paralyzed partially. I helped her with her coma to wear the kira and get her meals. She didn’t have a cell phone and couldn’t read or write to have noted down the numbers of her family. 

Everywhere I looked there was agony, hovering with large hollowed eyes. Human bondage is so powerful; even if I wanted to escape it, I couldn’t have gone far. My mother could never have escaped this surgery. 

Soon darkness started seeping in through the ward’s window. I looked outside, the cars flew past, and people were hurrying all bundled up in scarves and warm coats. Everybody had a destination to go to. Anxious they must be to reach the comfort and warmth of their homes, hurrying to feed their hungry and wailing babies at home, excited to see their loved ones. 

Anxiously, I also waited for my mother to talk to me, for her to reach out her hand and tell me to moisten her dried lips at least for she was not allowed to drink water. Often times, the irony of life hit me hard. Today you are here, tomorrow you may be gone. 

Soon silence overcame the darkness. It depressed me. It wasn’t the silence of silence. It was my own silence. I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. 
I longed for the comfort of my bed, a cup of steaming tea and a comfortable place to sit on and doze off. For a big time sleeper like me, eye bags had already started to appear under my eyes. 

Just another night and a new hope would dawn upon, I thought.The hope of going away from the ward excited me. The new dawn indeed brought me hopes. Mother was doing a lot better than expected. 

After another four nights, we were finally going home. The warm autumn sun welcomed us crisply. It was a different feeling for my lungs to breathe in fresh air. 

Outside, everything was perfectly normal, as if nothing grave is happening inside the hospital wards and the whole concept of hospital is non-existent. 

I took a deep breath, inhaled the fresh air as much as I could and my smile was the largest. Largest because there’s so much irony in life. 

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Sunday, November 17, 2013

5 reasons why I can never be a fashion blogger

I have often wondered how all those fashion bloggers manage to look so chic and perfect in their outfit photos. The poses they do to make the photo so appealing effortlessly and of course the outfit. I know this is simply not my thing. I’m more of a PJ and a sweatshirt person. I’m most at ease when I’m in them. That’s why here are the FIVE reasons I can never master the art of being a fashion blogger. 

1. I’m not a great poser: I just don’t know how to pose like a pro or look cute at least. In all my photos, my head is always tilted to the left; it goes off automatically as if I’m programmed to do that. Call this my signature pose. The HAND; 95% of the time I’m not sure where to place it and I tend to place it at the wrong place all the time. The picture below is the testimony. 
 
1.The Signature pose, head always tilted to the left. 2. Same Cardigan in the first and second pic 3. Check out the cross legged pose 4. The hairstyle

2. I’m not a fashionista : Apart from the traditional dress for work, 90% of the time, I will be wearing the same outfit over and over again. I’ll be droning the same outfit; Jeans, a top and of course the cardigan with a pair of loafers. Even if the weather gets too cold, I’ll be layering up ultimately with the cardigan. I buy clothes, shoes, bags and makeup but wear the same cardigan and carry the same bag, wear the same shoes until it breaks or wear the same scarf over and over again. Grrr…I’m this plain boring and lazy. 

3. The same old hairstyle: My hair is not exciting. I never try to experiment my hair (again laziness it could be or I dare not to look outrageous). It’s the same old left parting. Wash, blow-dry (sometimes), comb, let loose and go- that’s the only routine my hair have gone through for the past 27 years. 

4. My life is monotonous: My life lies on the 7 km road stretch between home and office so I land up wearing the same outfit again and again. Apart from the little grocery and vegetable shopping I do while returning from work, I do not meet many people. So neither is my life interesting to plan outfits.

5. My color palette is black or dull: I feel like I’m screaming if I wear pops of neon. So 95% of my closet is filled with either black or grey or dull colors. But, I’m learning to incorporate other shades.

So,do you also have reservations to become a fashion blogger like me?

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